Luke 12:23 The life is more than meat,

Greek : 

Literal Verse: 

This, as an explanation, "self"? [A thing] more it is than nurture. And the body? Than clothing. 

KJV : 

Luke 12:23 The life is more than meat, and the body is more than raiment.

Interesting and Hidden Aspects: 

In the Greek, this verse also is much more like a spoke statement than a written sentence. It is the last part of a verse in Matthew (Matthew 6:25).  It has a surprising change of form. The two key Greek words are best understood by first reading this article on the key terms

The verse begins with an untranslated word that introduces a reason or explanation so "because" and, in questions, "why." However, since this word always appears in the second position, it is more like an aside remark like, "as an explanation" or "as a cause". 

The Greek word translated here as "life" is psyche, a common word in Greek, familiar in English, meaning "life", "soul", "consciousness," and "a sense of self." Jesus uses it to specifically mean our identity in our worldly life, the role we play on earth, what we commonly call our "self" or "ego", not the soul that lives after death. See this article for detail about this word and related words. 

The verb "is" here is the common form of "to be" in Greek. It means to have a certain characteristic or remain in a certain condition.

The Greek word translated as "more than" is an adjective that means "more" in many different senses of the word. It seems to refer to the "life" above, but the word form doesn't agree. The form is neutral while "life" is feminine. The sense is the same as saying "a thing more", referring to something that is feminine as neutral. 

The word translated as "meat" also means "nourishment", "nurture," and "education." Christ uses this word to describe the food that takes care of people needs, so "nourishment" comes close in English. However, the sense of "nurture" is much broader when talking about developing the "self".  It is possessive, but the possessive form is what is used with comparative terms such as "more than". 

The word translated as "and" also means "also" or "even."

The word translated as "body" means "body", either living or dead, but it also means anything physical or solid. Like our word "body" it has special meanings such as "body" of proof and the "body" of a document. It is the opposite of "spirit" but more connected to the "soul" because it is part of this life. It is the physical substance of things, the body of men and animals or of heavenly bodies or groups of people.

There is no "is more" in this verse. It is assumed from the context. Very like a spoken statement than a written one. 

The word translated as "raiment" means "clothing" or "covering." It is in the possessive from so "of clothing" or "of covering."

Related Verses: 

Greek Vocabulary: 

(article sg fem nom) "Unto them that" is the Greek definite article, which usually precedes a noun and, without a noun, takes the meaning of "the one" or, in the plural, "the ones." 

γὰρ (partic) "For" comes from gar which is the introduction of a clause explaining a reason or explanation: "for", "since," and "as." In an abrupt question, it means "why" and "what."

ψυχὴ (noun sg fem nom) "Life" is psyche, which means "breath", "life", "self", "spirit," and "soul." It has the clear sense of the conscious self and is often translated as "life" in the Gospels. It is also used to describe "the spirit" of things. It is often translated as "soul." --

πλεῖόν (adj sg neut nom) "More" is pleiôn, which means "more [of number, size, extent]", "longer [of time]," "greater than," "further than," (with an article) "the greater number", "the mass or crowd", "the greater part", "the advantage. As an adverb, "more," or "rather." 

ἐστιν (verb 3rd sg pres ind act) "Is" is eimi, which means "to be", "to exist", "to be the case," and "is possible." 

τῆς τροφῆς (noun sg fem gen) "Meat" is trophe, which means "nourishment", "food", "that which provides sustenance", "provisions", "nurture", "rearing," and "education."

καὶ (conj/adv) "And" is kai, which is the conjunction joining phrases and clauses, "and," or "but." After words implying sameness, "as" (the same opinion as you). Used in series, joins positive with negative "Not only...but also." Also used to give emphasis, "even", "also," and "just."

τὸ σῶμα (noun sg neut nom) "Body" is soma, which means "body", "dead body", "the living body", "animal body", "person", "human being", "any corporeal substance", "metallic substance", "figure of three dimensions [math]", "solid", "whole [of a thing]", "frame [of a thing]", "the body of the proof", "a body of writings." and "text of a document." 

τοῦ ἐνδύματος. (noun sg neut gen) "Raiment" is endyma, which means "garment," and "covering." -- The word translated as "raiment" means "clothing" or "covering."

Front Page Date: 

Apr 10 2018